Developer: Monolith Soft
Release Date: 11/22/2013
Rating: Everyone 10+
Available Exclusively On
The Good: Looks decent, fun dungeons and bosses, solid Zelda gameplay
The Bad: Turning into a painting isn’t as useful or fun as it should be, just A Link to the Past remake, short and too easy, 3D effects don’t add much
So here I was thinking this game was going to be something completely new and exciting when I realized it was pretty much a port of A Link to the Past. That’s not really a bad thing since many younger gamers have never played that game before. What I also didn’t like was just how easy and short the game was. The dungeons themselves aren’t really all that hard but more confusing and some puzzles are really hard to figure out. With that said the game is enjoyable but some may not like it.
It all comes down to feeling like every other Zelda game out there. There’s not much to set this apart, and when you’re done with it you will just shrug and move on to the next game. The dungeon layout and the bosses are clever and fun but I just wish there was more to this game. One thing I also didn’t like was having to buy the equipment to keep it. If you rent equipment and die it will be sent back to Rovio’s shop in which you have to go back to your house and rent it again, and return to the dungeon you were at. At least there are warp spots which is a serious lifesaver. In all honesty, if these weren’t here I doubt most people would be able to stomach getting around.
Most dungeons involve a certain element or weapon. The boss in each dungeon also requires this weapon to defeat it. The sand rod, fire rod, ice rod, bomb, and various other weapons from past Zelda games make an appearance. However, the story involves Sages being turned into paintings and that’s where the whole “Link Between Worlds” thing comes in. This feature is actually quite gimmicky and the game would have been fine without it. It’s used as a segue between puzzles or just used briefly to get around. Flattening against a wall and shuffling side to side isn’t exactly a game selling feature and I felt it was poorly used here.
The game’s 8 dungeons may actually be enough for most people, especially Zelda fans. The most frustrating part was how to get to each dungeon since you can easily get lost or spend hours just wandering around aimlessly. The lack of direction has been abundant in the Zelda series and I feel needs to change. However, once again, some fans may be happy with this and that’s fine.
Overall, A Link Between Worlds is one of the best games available on 3DS and a fine Zelda game. It’s only issue is that it’s the same type of Zelda we have played numerous times and not the revolutionary Zelda we have come to expect from games like Phantom Hourglass. The 3D effects don’t really do much for the overall experience (like 99% of 3DS games) and can be just as enjoyable with the 3D turned off.